Main content area

Flexible Palladium-Based H2 Sensor with Fast Response and Low Leakage Detection by Nanoimprint Lithography

Lim, Su Hui, Radha, Boya, Chan, Jie Yong, Saifullah, Mohammad S. M., Kulkarni, Giridhar U., Ho, Ghim Wei
ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces 2013 v.5 no.15 pp. 7274-7281
durability, glass transition temperature, hydrogen, palladium
Flexible palladium-based H₂ sensors have a great potential in advanced sensing applications, as they offer advantages such as light weight, space conservation, and mechanical durability. Despite these advantages, the paucity of such sensors is due to the fact that they are difficult to fabricate while maintaining excellent sensing performance. Here, we demonstrate, using direct nanoimprint lithography of palladium, the fabrication of a flexible, durable, and fast responsive H₂ sensor that is capable of detecting H₂ gas concentration as low as 50 ppm. High resolution and high throughput patterning of palladium gratings over a 2 cm × 1 cm area on a rigid substrate was achieved by heat-treating nanoimprinted palladium benzyl mercaptide at 250 °C for 1 h. The flexible and robust H₂ sensing device was fabricated by subsequent transfer nanoimprinting of these gratings into a polycarbonate film at its glass transition temperature. This technique produces flexible H₂ sensors with improved durability, sensitivity, and response time in comparison to palladium thin films. At ambient pressure and temperature, the device showed a fast response time of 18 s at a H₂ concentration of 3500 ppm. At 50 ppm concentration, the response time was found to be 57 s. The flexibility of the sensor does not appear to compromise its performance.